We have written often about Never Trumpers at the State Department working against the president’s agenda in the Balkans, and specifically in Albania.
Acting Charge d’affaires Leyla Moses-Ones was caught retweeting anti-Trump messages from former FBI Director James B. Comey. The tweets were deleted only upon being publicized. The nomination of former Deputy Assistant Secretary Kathleen Ann Kavalec to be ambassador to Albania was withdrawn earlier this year after it was learned she talked to the author of the scandalous Steele dossier on President Trump.
But still the resistance to Mr. Trump’s policies from Foggy Bottom persists.
In a widely reported incident, the socialist government of Prime Minister Edi Rama was caught via audiotape colluding with organized crime figures in Albania prior to the 2017 national election to buy votes. The conservative Democratic Party has been leading large protests in the Albanian capital for weeks calling for the Rama government to resign.
Albanian President Ilir Meta, the only constitutional authority who can call elections, had decreed that municipal elections scheduled for Sunday should be moved to November to deal first with the governmental crisis, but the Rama government has ignored the decree.
Enter the U.S. State Department.
Matthew Palmer, who heads the State Department’s Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs, has now publicly stated that the elections should go ahead, effectively overruling the Albanian president and the Albanian constitution.
The former U.S. ambassador to Albania, Donald Lu, also expressed support for the government, even going so far as to cancel visas to the United States for opposition officials.
Then there’s the fact that Albanian Prime Minister Rama has been vocally anti-Trump and is a close confidant of U.S. liberal billionaire George Soros, even attending his last wedding.
“I would very much hope that [Mr. Trump] would understand that what he’s talking about is not at all a way to make America great again but is embarrassing America in the eyes of the world and in the eyes of all that see America as the shining city on the hill,” Mr. Rama told the Atlantic Council think tank in Washington in 2016, as reported by ForeignPolicy.com.
There are several questions to ask here. Why is the U.S. State Department apparently involving itself in internal Albanian politics? And why has the White House allowed the department to lend its support to a socialist government that stands accused of engaging in criminal activity and which has shown Mr. Trump himself such disrespect?
Who is running American foreign policy? Mike Pompeo may be the secretary, but too many holdovers at the State Department seem not to have noticed the American people elected a new leader with a new agenda in November 2016. That the mixed messages are being delivered a region as unstable as the Balkans only makes matters worse.
The State Department has not even called out the suspected collusion of the Rama government with organized crime figures. There has been a strange silence on the controversy and the question is why. Could it be the department is quietly sympathetic to Mr. Soros’ liberal agenda of open borders, legalized drugs and global governance?
Mr. Rama’s own words are worth studying for that answer.
As he once said, according to ForeignPolicy.com: “Europe has its own Donald Trumps here and there who came before Donald Trump, who practically embarrassed Europe with their views on immigrants, with their views on Muslims, with their views on the [European Union] itself. You have [Islamic State] and you have this kind of, you know, cold-blooded extremists on the other side of the coin. It’s incredible.”
• L. Todd Wood is a former special operations helicopter pilot and Wall Street debt trader, and has contributed to Fox Business, The Moscow Times, National Review, The New York Post and many other publications. He can be reached at LToddWood.com.
Copyright © 2021 The Washington Times, LLC.